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38 New Families Formed at D.C. Courts’ 33rd Annual Adoption Day

By Jeffery Leon

November 21, 2019


NBC4’s Barbara Harrison (right) introduces Serena Parks and her adopted daughter “Bunny” during the Annual D.C. Adoption Day in Court on November 16. Bunny’s legal team included guardian ad litem Olabisi M. Davies of the Children’s Law Center. (Kea Dupree-Alfred/Children’s Law Center)

November 16 was a joyous occasion at the H. Carl Moultrie Courthouse as the D.C. Superior Court and the D.C. Child and Family Services Agency (CFSA) hosted the 33rd Annual D.C. Adoption Day in Court. At this year’s event, 47 children were adopted to form 38 new families, with adoptees ranging in age from two months to 20 years old.

“This event is one of the highlights of our year — it’s wonderful to see so many smiles in our courthouse,” said D.C. Superior Court Chief Judge Robert Morin, who delivered the opening remarks. “This year we had many more children than usual, which was a delight. To see children who might otherwise have been in foster care for a number of years, or possibly aged out of the system when they turn 21, officially become part of their ‘forever family’ is heartwarming.”

NBC4’s Barbara Harrison, who emceed the ceremony, introduced the families to the packed courthouse, bringing out each child with his or her new family and sharing their adoption stories. Many of the children were visibly excited to join their forever family.

“What’s so wonderful about the Adoption Day in Court event is that members of the public get to see the happy ending that can occur for children and teens in foster care,” said D.C. Family Court Presiding Judge Peter Krauthamer. “It is quite moving to see each family come forward and watch as the judge signs the adoption decree that officially makes them a family.”

In 2019 the court granted 172 adoptions, 99 of which arose from neglect cases. While the number of D.C. children in foster care has been dropping since 2016, there are still more than 750 children in foster care, with 60 seeking permanent homes.

Learn more about adoption in Washington, D.C., from the CFSA and the organization Adoptions Together.